Thursday, September 29, 2011

Win Big! Happy Birthday, Evernight Publishing!

October 1st is Evernight's Birthday

Come Join in our Author Blog Hop!


New KINDLE E-Reader

$50.00 Cash via PayPal

$40.00 Evernight Gift Certificate

We will also be choosing ONE winner from EACH of the participating blogs to win a $5.00 Evernight Gift Certificate. Many of the bloggers are also giving away additional prizes.

To be entered in the Grand Prize draws, you will need to FOLLOW and COMMENT on the Evernight Publishing Blog. We will be selecting the winners from the comments of random blogs in the hop, so make sure to visit as many as you can!

We want to thank our readers and authors for a wonderful first year!

Have Fun Hopping!

Note from the Book Boost (a/k/a Author, Kerri Nelson): Follow us here at the blog and on Twitter and then leave a comment to let me know you've done it and enter to win a free cover ad here at the Boost (if you're an author) or a free download from my back list (winner's choice of either of my Evernight titles). HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my one of my fave publishers, Evernight! Woot!

Oh, and here are the links to my two books with Evernight.

Double Take
Buy Me Now!

'Twas A Dark & Delicious Christmas Anthology
Buy Me Now!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Meet talented UK Author: Rachel Brimble

Win a book of your choice from author Rachel Brimble today at the Book Boost!

I recently had a chat with Rachel and here's what she had to say...

TBB: Welcome to the Book Boost, Rachel. Please share with us your latest news.

RB: My latest news is the release of my sixth novel, Paying The Piper. It is a contemporary romance set in South West England, against the backdrop of nightclubs and pubs. It’s a darker, grittier read than my other books but hope my readers enjoy it! I loved writing it. Especially the comedy scenes…

TBB: I really love the sound of this one. I'm intrigued already. Could you share the blurb with us?


Nightclub manager, Grace Butler is on a mission to buy the pub where her mother’s ashes are scattered – except the vendor wants to sell to anyone but her. And the vendor happens to be her father…with a secret Grace will do anything to uncover.

Social worker and all-round good guy, Jimmy Betts needs cash to buy a house for three special kids before their care home closes. In a desperate bid for cash, he agrees to a one-time ‘job’ for bad-man Karl Butler. But in a sudden turn of events, Jimmy finds himself employed by Karl’s beautiful, funny and incredibly sexy daughter, Grace.

Their lives are so different except for one unifying thread – they are both trying to escape the binds of their tyrannical fathers. But is the key to their liberty each other?

TBB: I'm totally hooked now. This is definitely going on my TBR list. Most writers are also avid readers, what are you reading right now?

RB: I usually have more than one book on the go and I currently have two – I am reading Highland Arms by Cathie Dunn, a Scottish historical romance where I am more than a little in lust with the hero. And the other is, Iris & Ruby by Rosie Thomas which is fabulously atmospheric, set in Egypt and about three generations of women in the same family. Highly recommended.

TBB: Nice choices. Since this is your sixth novel, what has been your biggest reward as an author thus far in your career?

RB: I feel as though I have had many rewards thus far – each book contract is a reward, each new cover, each new idea, lol! But the latest reward that made me burst into tears was the email from my now agent saying she’d like to represent me. It made me the happiest woman alive, believe me!

TBB: Oh, this is so great, Rachel. Big Congrats! There's nothing like having another industry professional willing to back your work. But now that you're a successful author...can you tell a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

RB: A writer – honestly! When I was ten or eleven I wanted to be journalist but as I got older, I knew I wanted to write novels. Of course, real life took over and I worked in a bank for ten years, got married and had children. But once they were both at school full-time I started writing in earnest and my first book was contracted a year later.

TBB: That is great that your dreams are coming true. Well done. Now, let's have a little fun...what is your favorite breakfast food?

RB: Bacon muffins at the weekend and Marmite on toast in the week – not sure if you guys have Marmite in the US? You either love it or hate it!

TBB: Now, bacon muffins I'm totally in agreement with but the Marmite---eeh gads! I had a tiny bit when I was visiting Ireland and it is not up my alley at all. And, no, we don't really have it here in the States. But I did fall in love with those grilled tomatoes they served over there. Now I'm getting hungry. Let's move on to music, what song lyric gets stuck in your head most often?

RB: It is usually a Michael Buble song because my husband is constantly playing him!

TBB: Oh, I like his stuff too. I like the song "Sway". On the less fun side, what is your biggest pet peeve?

RB: Selfishness & ill-treatment of others – I get more than a little angry if I see any of that going on, lol!

TBB: Well that just goes to show how swell you are...nice pet peeve to have. Thanks for joining us today and best of luck with the newest release!

Want More Rachel?

Visit her website here:

Follow her blog here:

Tweet with her here:

Pick up your copy of her book today! Click here.

Contest Time:

Leave a question or comment for Rachel and be entered to win a download of one of Rachel's books (winner's choice).

**Winners for Book Boost prizes are drawn the first week of the following month and posted in the Recent Winners box in the right hand side of the blog. Check back to see if you are a winner and to claim your prize! Please leave your contact information in your blog post!**

Friday, September 23, 2011

Take a Stand with Guest Bloggers: Decadent Publishing

Welcome the One Night Stand series authors & creators from Decadent Publishing today at the Book Boost!

Here's what they had to share...

Madame Evangeline is a woman to be reckoned with. Owner of a highly successful matchmaking service, she started out with a concept that seems to work. Put the right two people together for just one night and anything is possible. Especially when the dates take place at the fabulous Castillo Hotels and Resorts in some of the most exotic places in the world—and Las Vegas!

Olivia Starke, Valerie Mann and Kate Richards came up with the idea for a very special kind of matchmaking about a year ago, but it was not until this past winter that we presented our three stories to Decadent Publishing’s Lisa Olmstead who asked us to get more! Well...we have over thirty released and more than that in editing at this point.

A wild blitz of paranormal romances in October and a Christmas anthology full of sexy surprises! We never dreamed it would be this exciting or this much fun but it just goes to show that Madame Evangeline is magic and we’d put her record for romantic pairings up against any other dating service any day of the week.

The most recent addition to the series is Bound for Pleasure by Ann Mayburn, who has taken the series by storm and here is a little about it:


Football star Tycen Preston has everything he could want, everything but the healing release of subspace that he desperately needs. After four years of searching for the right woman, he finally has the opportunity to indulge in all the dark, forbidden desires that would ruin his carefully crafted image if anyone ever found out.

Lara Hernandez is tired of the weak submissive men that offer her no challenge. She yearns for a strong Alpha male to tame and call her own. A blind date arranged by the mysterious Madam Eve seems to be the perfect arrangement for fulfilling both of their decadent cravings. Unfortunately a scheming paparazzi photographer is hot on their trail, and will do anything he can to get a scandalous picture of Tycen that would destroy his career.

Want More 1 Night Stands?

Follow our blog here:

Visit our publisher's site here:

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Port of Call for Love with Guest Blogger: Christi Barth

Meet author Christi Barth and win a copy of Cruising Toward Love today at the Book Boost!

Recently, I chatted with Christi and here's what she had to say...

TBB: Where are you from?

CB: The tiny town of La Canada, CA, best known for being the #3 nuclear strike target during the Cold War, because we were right next to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. I, however, like to remember it being all about the Rose Parade, and I decorated our city's float for five years.

TBB: Yes, I like your memory of choice better as well. Tell us about when and why you began writing?

CB: Back in junior high, honestly just as something to do to break up the monotony of summer vacation (yes, this was pre-internet). Spurred on by winning a few school literary contests, I kept at it throughout the years, and finally realized I needed to either seriously commit or quit altogether. I gave myself until my next birthday to finish a complete book, and I typed "The End" 24 hours before that self-imposed deadline.

TBB: Nothing like a deadline to get those fingers moving, is it? So, when did you first consider yourself a professional writer?

CB: The first day my book went on sale. Signing the contract didn't do it, seeing the cover didn't do it, but knowing that people were plunking down their hard-earned cash to read what I wrote felt very, very official.

TBB: I know. Isn't is strange that people will pay money to hear the thoughts in your head? Scary. Most writers are also avid readers, what book are you reading now?

CB: I don't know whether to thank or curse my RWA chaptermate that turned me on to JR Ward, because I am now working my way through the Black Dagger Brotherhood series at the total exclusion to everything else in my life. Picked up #5 yesterday, and will probably get started on it tonight, even though I have to finish something else for my book club by Monday.

TBB: I'm fairly certain you are not alone in your addiction. When you're not feeding that JR Ward addiction, what are your current writing projects?

CB: I recently finished Book 1 in a wedding planning trilogy set in Chicago. Ready to dive into Book 2, centering around a chocolatier (I'm going to find an excuse to do lots of hands-on research for this one).

TBB: Now, that sounds like an addiction I could join in on. Chocolate is the bomb (no pun intended re: the nuclear thingie). Do you have any advice for other writers out there hoping to get published soon?

CB: Yes! Two big pieces of advice would be to join a critique group and to keep writing. Don't let excuses pile up as to why you don't have time to write - treat it like a job and hit your weekly word count no matter what.

TBB: Great words of advice and thanks so much for joining us and letting our readers meet you today at the Boost. Please tell us more about your book before you go.


Can an unexplained breakup and ten years of heartache be cured by the romance – and endless buffets – of a tropical cruise? When her sister is left at the altar, small town librarian Zoe Balis jumps at the chance to take the bride’s unused ticket for the honeymoon cruise. But she didn't count on sharing a cabin with the man who broke her heart ten years ago!

Army medic Nate Hyatt never told Zoe goodbye when he enlisted - or the real reason why he dumped her on prom night after a year as high school sweethearts. And he never stopped dreaming about the girl he left behind. Could this voyage be his chance to fix the worst mistake he ever made? After all, a Caribbean cruise should be romantic… if he can convince her to move past ten years of bitterness and hurt.

Once aboard the luxury liner, Zoe befriends a bored Internet mogul with more heart than tact. Nate vents his problems to a ship’s photographer battling PTSD. The four team up on an island hopping treasure hunt. The stakes grow higher with each of Zoe’s mysterious brushes with death. They race to discover why she's a target and who's behind it, while still competing in the treasure hunt. Zoe’s never gotten over her first love, and is tempted to let Nate back into her life. But she already lost him once. She’s not willing to risk loving a man whose career keeps him in a combat zone. Can Nate breach her defenses and suture her broken heart? Grab a deck chair and see if they survive the stormy relationship seas as they cruise toward love!


"Did you stop kissing me because you weren’t enjoying it? You see, I’ve dealt with the first time you rejected me, when you left all those years ago. There’s no need to rehash the past. But I don’t think I could bear you rejecting me a second time. So I have to know—did you not take me to bed the other night because I didn’t turn you on, or was it because I somehow wasn’t good enough at it?"

The world stood still while she waited for his answer. Zoe focused on the squawk of sea gulls and the muted slap of the surf at the base of the wall. The lyrical lilt of Spanish from the group of teenagers passing by. A low buzz which must be some exotic insect in the shrubbery along the path. Every sound in her immediate vicinity rang with absurd clarity—except the sound she waited on with bated breath—Nate’s reply.

"If you still don’t want me, just say so, damn it!" she burst out.

Was it anger that hardened the lines of his body? Disinterest? Annoyance? Zoe couldn’t get a read on him. Nate advanced slowly. She backed into the turret, the space tight and cramped even for her stature. Built for the far shorter men of an earlier century, Nate had to duck his head as he edged ever closer. His sheer presence commanded as much area as his physical body. Something, some emotion rolled off him in waves, shimmering like heat above asphalt on a summer day. Why couldn’t she tell what was going on in his head?

"The sky is blue," said Nate, his face separated from hers by only a breath.

Huh? "Is that a military thing? Are you talking in code?"

"The sun rises in the east. Play with fire and you’ll get burned. These are all absolute truths. Indisputable facts. Well, there’s one more absolute you need to file away in your mental card catalog."

Nate brought the lower half of his body so close Zoe felt the heat radiating from his legs.

Despite the heat, her goose bumps had goose bumps. The anticipation of his touch brought her every sense to high alert. He raised his arms up, planted his hands on either side of her head to cage her in place. Then he tilted so his forehead bumped hers. Her field of vision narrowed to the indigo sea of his eyes, pupils flooding black in the shaded darkness of the narrow turret they shared.

"I want you, Zoe." He forced the words out in a heavy rasp. "I wanted you the day we met. You wore a red ribbon in your hair, dropped a stack of books on my foot, and apologized adorably for ten minutes. All I could think of was wrapping the ribbon around my hand to pull you in for a kiss. I wanted you the first time we kissed, on the bridge in a storm. One by one, I licked off every raindrop that clung to your skin. I wanted you when I saw you covered in mud last Friday. Wanted you badly enough to crawl right into the mud to be with you. I want you now, and I will always want you."

Zoe let her eyes flutter shut in preparation for a kiss. Such a heartfelt, utterly romantic speech could only end one way. Just as whipped cream hungered for a cherry, his words demanded to be topped off by a kiss. She didn’t care about the past. With a handful of sentences he’d put her insecurities to rest. Nate dazzled her, and she was ready for more.

What was taking him so long? From beneath her lashes she snuck a peek. No Nate. Hoping the knees he’d melted to jelly would hold her, Zoe scrambled out onto the dirt path. Twenty strides ahead, Nate bellowed at her over his shoulder. "Hurry up. We don’t want to miss the reading of the clue."

From confusion to relief with paper hearts dancing overhead...right back to confusion, all in less than five minutes. Zoe trudged after him with one thought uppermost in her mind—now what?

Want More Christi?

Visit her website here:

Pick up your copy of her book today! Click here.

Contest Time:

Being on a cruise ship sets you adrift from your normal life, and gives people the chance to step outside their comfort zone. What's the craziest thing you've ever done on vacation? Comment for the chance to win an e-copy of Cruising Toward Love .

**Winners for Book Boost prizes are drawn the first week of the following month and posted in the Recent Winners box in the right hand side of the blog. Check back to see if you are a winner and to claim your prize! Please leave your contact information in your blog post!**

Friday, September 16, 2011

I Cannot Tell a Lie Book Review: Cathi Stoler

"Cathi Stoler is a master storyteller who reeled me in 'til the very end..."
--The Book Boost

Most of you know that I rarely accept books for review here at the Book Boost. Not because I don't like doing reviews (I really do!) and certainly not because I don't like reading (I really, really, really do!). But simply because I don't have enough hours in the day.

However, sometimes I make an exception and select a book that tickles my interest and forces me to share my thoughts with the world. Cathi Stoler's debut release Telling Lies is just such a book.

Here's a quick blurb for the book and then I'll tell you what I thought of this story.


How many lies does it take to get away with murder?

When a chance encounter in Florence’s Uffizi Museum plunges Women Now editor Laurel Imperiole and private investigator Helen McCorkendale into an investigation of missing persons and stolen Nazi art, the women find themselves ensnared in a deadly maze of greed and deceit.

Could the man Laurel bumped into have been Jeff Sargasso, an art dealer and friend who perished in the World Trade Center on 9/11? Was it possible he was still alive and had disappeared without a trace?

Laurel, who was vacationing in Italy with her boyfriend, Aaron Gerrad, a New York City detective, is thoroughly shaken by the experience of seemingly meeting a dead man. Sargasso was supposedly killed that day during a meeting regarding the sale of a 150 million dollar painting between a Japanese billionaire and a Wall Street tycoon.

Determined to get to the bottom of things, she and Helen investigate in Italy and in New York.
As she delves deeper, Laurel leaves the truth behind, telling lies to Aaron about her actions and the liaison she’s formed with Lior Stern, an Israeli Mossad agent with an agenda of his own.

One lie leads to another, entangling everyone and everything the women encounter, including murder and the painting at the heart of the affair.
Searching for answers, Laurel and Helen thread their way through a sinister skein of lies that take them on a whirlwind journey that could end in death.

Wow! There's a lot going on here.

Now, maybe I was swayed a tad bit by the fact that the tragedies of 9/11 come into play with this storyline. (For those of you who don't know, 9/11 is also my birthday.) Cause when I read the blurb about how someone could have used the chaos following that terrible day as a way to mastermind the "fakery" of their own death...I was instantly hooked. I had to know more. What a great idea for a storyline!

I could have read this book in a couple of sittings. It was all the things you hear about great books like "a page turner that never lets up" and "full of twists and turns that don't stop 'til the very end". But I forced myself to take my time and absorb each delicious chapter. The writing was quite good. The characters very interesting (although I found myself liking some of the secondary characters much more than the main characters--and hope they get their own story in the near future--hint, hint).

I really enjoyed this book from cover to cover. I was most surprised to learn that this was a debut release from author Cathi Stoler. In the story she refers back (several times) to how the characters all first met and it sounds like it was one heck of a meeting. I kept thinking that this was a sequel to another book but I don't believe that is the case. I'd really love to go back and hear more about the ordeal that brought all these unique personalities together on the pages of Telling Lies.

That being said, the book was well crafted, well edited (yay!) and readers will be left not so tenderly hanging on the edge of our seats until Ms. Stoler gives us another one (hopefully soon).

So, do I think you should pick up a copy of Telling Lies? Absolutely.

Will I look for more books from Cathi Stoler? No doubt.

What's my fave fun fact about the book? She gives a shout out to one of my all time fave music groups from the 60's cleverly inserted in a most unusual place. And, I mean, really...she got me with that. This is one of my all time fave groups and not the typically referenced shaggy haired foursome from that groovy decade either.

And that's pretty much all I can say about that except...go pick up a copy! You won't regret it! Would I lie to you?

--Kerri Nelson
Owner, The Book Boost

Want More Cathi?

Visit her website here:

Follow her on Twitter here:

Click here to watch the Trailer!

Pick up your copy today! Click here.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Dark Days of Demons Blog Tour Launches!


Come meet the Paul rat on tour!

Tomorrow is the BIG day for me! My long awaited release hits the shelves on Thursday, September 15th and Courting Demons brings with it fun, fiction, free stuff, and hopefully new fans!

I hope you'll come out and play along with me through the end of October. Every weekday between now and then, I'll be appearing on various blogs around the web and giving away prizes every step of the way.

For those who want a chance to win my GRAND PRIZE (a brand new Amazon Kindle), you'll need to keep up with the tour and be ready to answer each Question of the Day as presented at each appearance. Don't post the answers at the blogs. Just keep up with them and e-mail to me at the end of the contest. The more correct answers you get, the more entries you'll have toward that Kindle!

Most answers to daily questions can be found by doing a little research (reading the back cover blurb or story excerpts—available on the publisher’s website (click here) and by subscribing to the publisher’s newsletter (click here); following the author on Twitter (click here) for hints to the answers which will be posted throughout the month; and by reading the blog posts throughout the tour (click here); but a few answers will only be available by purchasing/reading the book). No purchase is necessary to win but the more answers you get correct, the more entries you get into the Kindle drawing.

For a full list of dates and links to my appearances plus the details on how to enter the Grand Prize drawing visit my author blog here:

Special Offer (while supplies last):

Pre-Order Courting Demons in print directly from the Publisher and get a free set of incense (like the wicked white witch scent)! Click here to order today!

And don't forget to participate in the daily prizes and interactive questions each day!

Let's get started...

Today's Question of the Day:

Why does Paisley turn her hubby Paul into a rat?

See you on tour,
Kerri Nelson

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Time Changes with Guest Blogger: Cheryl Bolen

Win a paperback book (winner's choice) and chat with author Cheryl Bolen today at the Book Boost!

Here's what she had to say...

My last print book came out in October of 2005. Six long years ago. Since then, I've had a hurricane destroy my house, and I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Understandably, these things interfered with my productivity of new books.

My last print book, One Golden Ring, was a Christmas Regency-set historical romance. It got stellar reviews (Perfect 10, 5 Stars, etc.) and sold out its print run before its release day. It also won the Holt Medallion as the Best Historical Romance book of the year. Unfortunately, my publisher, Kensington's Zebra Historical, opted not to go back and reprint. Therefore, I opted not to publish with them anymore. So, that's another reason for the delay in sales.

I have recently agreed to a contract with a new print publisher. Do you all know how much has changed in the romance publishing industry in the past six years? Was this site even here six years ago? Most of today's popular review sites are online sites and blogs that were not around in 2005. And what about social media like Twitter? I've got a whole new learning curve.

One of the new things I'm really having fun with is repackaging some of my older out-of-print books for e-books. (I have not been able to get reversion of my rights on three of my older books.) One of those, A Duke Deceived, has just been released by Harlequin Historical as a Harlequin Treasure e-book.)

I'm the author and publisher of seven Regency-set historical romance e-books available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, the I Store, etc. Two of the seven are traditional Regencies – those without sex scenes. All seven have been in the Top 75 sellers at Amazon in Regency books. Three of them are in the Top 20, including My Lord Wicked, which is holding steady at Number 2.

Surprisingly, My Lord Wicked is an original e-book that was never published before. It has outsold all the others, several of which were award winners when they were available as mass market paperbacks. My first print publisher turned it down as my option book, and being a newbie, I thought maybe it wasn't a very good book. It was one of those we writers stash under our beds. I've got a lot of those, probably about 20! (My first book sold was the 7th written!)

But when I re-examined it recently, I thought it was worthy of publication. Trust me, some of my other ones which didn't sell previously I would not foist upon readers who've come to expect a certain quality book from Cheryl Bolen. I re-edited it and together with my techie-savvy hubby designed a tasteful cover for it, and put the e-book up there for the world to see. I am very pleased to report that so far on Amazon, it has received three reviews, and all gave it the full five stars.

Two others of those seven Regencies are also originals. The Earl's Bargain is a book I wrote targeting the old Signet Regencies (the sweet ones). An editor there liked it and asked for minor revisions, which I made. However, the editor left, and the line closed. I'm happy to say this book, too, is currently in the Top 20 at Amazon. Since the traditional Regencies are no longer being published in print, they are extremely popular as e-books.

The other original is a new work. Several readers of my last book asked for stories for my fictional Birmingham Brothers, the richest banking family in England. I began a book for one of them, but I decided to turn it into a novella. Thus, Lady Sophia's Rescue, was born. It's a very lighthearted traditional Regency that will have readers laughing, as does The Earl's Bargain. (Not so with My Lord Wicked, which is in the Jane Eyre mode.)

The book I just sold to Love Inspired Historical (a subsidiary of Harlequin) is another light-hearted read. It's the story of Rebecca Peabody, who was introduced in my Counterfeit Countess (for which I cannot get back my rights) and continued in One Golden Ring. Now, she will get her own story.

Even though I've not been publishing much fiction in the past six years, I've continued to write articles about Regency England for various publications. Most can now be found on my website.

A Note from the Book Boost: Thanks for sharing your journey through time with us today, Cheryl. Please tell us more about that wicked lord...


What woman would dare make her home at eerie Marshbanks Abbey, perched on a stony hill in remote Northumbria? It is said its owner, the brilliant botanist, Lord Stacks, killed his beautiful bride there ten years earlier.

Unaware of the tales of Lord Stacks' wickedness, Freddie Lambeth comes to live with her guardian, and through his caring blossoms from a plain, shabbily dressed girl to a lovely young woman. Freddie and Lord Stacks come to need each other as his flowers need sunshine, but Stacks cannot allow himself to love her. His own wickedness has destroyed any chance for happiness.


Was he in a hurry to be rid of her? At least he wanted a sensational mate for her. There was only one mate
for her, she thought morosely. And he would be sensational. She closed her eyes and thought of being enfolded in Lord Stack's strong embrace, of resting her face against his chest, of lifting her lips to his.

She grew hot as she
imagined what it would feel like to have his mouth on hers, his tongue parting her lips. A wet heat centered between her legs. Her thoughts drifted even further away. She thought of lying with him, wet flesh against wet flesh. She could almost feel his mouth close around one breast.

"You do not look happy," he said.

She drew a deep breath and faced him. "It seems my company grows tedious for you. You are in so great a haste
to marry me off, to be rid of me."

He reached out and touched a finger to her cheek. "I attempt to be selfless, Miss Lambeth. I want what is best
for you. For myself, I would have you at Marshbanks Abbey until the end of my days."

Until the end of his days. If only. . . He studied her face for a moment. "I believe the prospect does not offend

"You must believe me when I tell you I've never been happier than in these past few months at
the abbey." She
had wanted to say these past few months with you.

"Then your life must have been singularly uneventful before."

She smiled. "That, too."

He took a sip of wine, peering at her over the rim of his glass. "Do you miss your father?"

She gathered a handful of soft fabric from her skirt into her hand. "To be honest, no."

His brows lowered. "How can that be? You seem to worry over every creature. You are so very caring."

"The exact word I would use to describe you, my lord. However, caring is not a word I would use to describe
my father, although he did care very much for my mother. Unfortunately, he held me responsible for taking her from him."

"But that's ridiculous! You didn't ask to be born!"

"He did not see it that way."

Stacks watched the leaves of the tree shimmer in the breeze and did not speak for a moment.

"So that explains
why your education in the feminine arts was so neglected."

She nodded. "You have shown me more love in these past few months than I received in an entire lifetime."

She felt her cheeks growing hot. Why had she used the word love? She had not meant to burden him with details
of her unhappy life, but she felt incredibly open whenever she was with him. "That is why I've been so happy here, why I am in no hurry to leave the walls of Marshbanks Abbey."

He reached out and took her hand. "You have a home here for as long as you want."

She looked up at him, her eyes swimming in pools of unshed tears.

Lord Stacks was moving to her. She felt his arms close around her. She felt his warm breath on her cheek, and
she lifted her face to receive his kiss.

Want More Cheryl?

Visit her website here:

Follow her blog here:

Contest Time:

Leave a question or comment for Cheryl and be entered to win a paperback book from her backlist (winner's choice).

**Winners for Book Boost prizes are drawn the first week of the following month and posted in the Recent Winners box in the right hand side of the blog. Check back to see if you are a winner and to claim your prize! Please leave your contact information in your blog post!**

Friday, September 9, 2011

GMC the Author Way with Guest Blogger: Bri Clark

Welcome back author Bri Clark today to the Book Boost!

She's here to discuss Goal, Motivation and Conflict...

My editor at Astraea Press (Stephanie Taylor) and I were discussing submissions one day. She was expressing her dismay at having to reject so many. She’s wore the author cap too. She knows the sting. Nevertheless, she said she couldn’t accept a novel of any kind lacking GMC. GMC…I repeated. What’s that? Goals, Motivation, Conflict she explained…, which is what, spurred this post.

Goals: A story needs to have goals for the overall book as well as for the characters to keep the reader moving. Especially the main characters…however even the supporting characters need something to reach for. Take Shae Stryker in Glazier. She is a strong, sassy southern woman married to Collin Stryker a weapons analyst. Each one has goals… however, sometimes when there are strong secondary’s their goals may cross over with the protagonists thus creating drama and conflict. However, that’s for another post. If there are no goals, the story isn’t going anywhere. Really, a novel without purpose is like watching a cat chase a mouse in a circle. Its fun the first two times after that then the yawns begin—or worse they put the book down with an eye roll.

Motivation: This area in my opinion is really about your characters, the good the bad and the boring. Yes, I need to know why the boring characters are so boring! Readers need to know why the villain is so disturbed and why the hero fights so hard to do what is right. I’ll use Henry Tenison in Glazier. Decorated soldier, elite spy, lifetime scoundrel and the only other known Glazier in the world—he has never felt emotions for someone like he does Marie. Is it a bond forged through Glazier? Is it genuine affection? And the passion is nothing he could even dream of…but yet he doesn’t act upon it…why? In order for us as readers to connect with the characters we have to know their motivation, what drives them; better yet, we have to be shown.

Conflict: What is a happy conclusion without the journey? Really, it’s not even an ending it’s just knowledge. While happy is great, we don’t really get it without sad to be its counter balance. Thus conflict is born. Along with conflict there need to be all kinds of elements and layering into the story. For example in Glazier, the ultimate conflict is what the heck is Glazier anyway? Is it a genetic superpower or is it something supernatural? Then there is the conflict of the protagonists Henry and Marie. They each share Glazier so they share the plot conflict but then they each have their own personal trials along the way. Oh, how I love it when the personal conflicts of each person weave together then when overcome more conflict is found and a series erupts. In case you were wondering, Glazier is the first of a series.

The point is it doesn’t matter the genre, voice or publisher if there is not GMC the possibility for success is needlessly hindered.

A Note from the Book Boost: Thanks for breaking that down for us, Bri. And Congrats on your newest release! Please tell us more.


Marie Kincaid suffering the greatest loss a woman can know runs from the pain. Falling asleep deep within the forest she awakes in an infirmary with a loss of memory and a power, she’s always possessed yet never known: Glazier. Glazier enables Marie to embark on a new life free of pain but most importantly free of the past. Heightened senses, accelerated strength, speed, and learning abilities make Marie a perfect candidate to be a spy…also a perfect companion for Henry Tenison…the only other known Glazier.

Henry, a loner and proud rogue finds his world upended when his connection to Marie is forged through Glazier. Unsure of how to progress with any relationship with her he endeavors to keep it strictly platonic and professional. As far away, missions and romantic surroundings entice him into pursuing his deeper desires he caves. However, Marie’ love changes everything.

Determined to free them both of the spy world and hold Abram their superior has over them Henry implements a plot to disappear. However, when things become dangerous in their latest mission, their first undercover, and memories of Marie’s past surface suggesting another man…will Henry’s efforts prove to come too late? If Marie remembers her past, will she still want their future.


"I can’t let myself do this to you.” Hearing his explanation brought a fire back but it wasn’t passion, it was fury.

“What! Do this to me?” I cried. So sudden was my anger that he was taken off guard.

Untwisting my arm, I pulled my legs up under his chest, and flipped him over the back of the couch. However, he didn’t let go of my arm and took me with him. After I landed on his chest, he huffed from the impact. I jumped up but he still held on to my wrist. As he tried to stand, I kicked his legs out from under him. We both fell to the floor again. That was it. I was beyond mad, I was furious.

“Just wait a second, let me explain, Love,” he implored.

“Love! Oh now I’m your love again when you see that I'?m about to kick your butt. Five minutes ago, I was one of your little harlots you seduced and couldn’t let…UGH!” I tried jumping up, but he still had my arm in a steel tight grip that now ached. “If you don’t let go of my arm, I swear I will rip yours right from the socket.”

Still holding firm he raised his free hand palm forward as we faced each other.

“Now just relax a blooming minute, Marie. Let me explain. I…”

“You can explain all you want. But I see everything. I am going to give you till the count of five to let go of my arm, Henry.” I warned.

“ONE,” I started.

“I don’t want to hurt you.”


“You mean everything to me, I…” he tried again.


“Would you please quit counting you’re making it hard to think? It’s hard enough to think clearly just looking at you.”

“FIVE!” I screamed. That was it, hard for him to think! As if I was some kind of villain, I punched him.

“OOOWWW. What happened to four?” With his grip even stronger, he spun me into his chest.

When he tried to wrap his other arm around me to trap me in his grasp, my head whipped back, and I popped him right in the nose. Shouting in pain, he let go and I fell to the floor. I hadn’t expected him to drop me. Rolling to my left side, I couldn’t find any part of me that wasn’t hurting.

My heart ached from rejection, my throat hurt from sobbing, and my eyes hurt from the tears.

Hugging my knees to my chest, I laid my head to the wood in defeat.

Want More Bri?

Bri Clark is a real example of redemption and renewal. Growing penniless in the South, Bri learned street smarts while caring for her brother in a broken home. She watched her mother work several jobs to care for their small family. Once her brother could fend for himself, Bri moved on to a series of bad choices including leaving school and living on her own. Rebelliousness was a strong understatement to describe those formative years. As a teenager, her wakeup call came from a fight with brass knuckles and a judge that gave her a choice of shaping up or spending time in jail. She took that opportunity and found a way to moved up from the streets.

She ended up co-owning an extremely successful construction business. She lived the high life until the real estate crash when she lost everything. She moved west and found herself living with her husband and 4 kids in a 900 square foot apartment. She now fills her time, writing, blogging, leading a group of frugal shoppers and sharing her southern culture. Her unique background gives her writing a raw sensibility. She understands what it takes to overcome life’s obstacles. She often tells friends, “I can do poor. I’m good at poor. It’s prosperity that I’m not used to.” Bri and her husband Chris live in Boise. Bri is known as the Belle of Boise for her true southern accent, bold demeanor and hospitable nature.

Bri boasts several positions in the publishing industry. An author, professional reviewer, blogger, and author platform consultant she enjoys all aspects of her career from the creation of story to the branding and marketing needed to make her books successful.

Follow her blog here:

Pick up your copy of her book today! Click here.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Birth Rites the Bookish Way with Guest Blogger: Natalie Damschroder

Meet author Natalie Damschroder
today at the Book Boost!

Here's what she had to say about
how books are like babies...

I know, everyone says that, but they don't usually mean it in the way I do. For example...

I can only create one thing at a time.

I got pregnant the first time when I was writing my first book. My writing petered out about halfway through the pregnancy, and I told myself that I was just being lazy. I kicked myself for wasting all that kid-free time. And then I pounded out the rest of the book within a couple of months after she was born. Fluke, right?

Four years later, disciplined, with several completed books under my belt, I...petered out halfway through the pregnancy. This time, I knew it wasn't my fault. I was trying! It just wouldn't come. I knew I was about to go into labor the night I wrote 8 pages. Told my husband to call his sister and be alert. She didn't believe me, and never answered the phone when we called at 1:00 a.m.

Obviously, all my creativity was sucked from my brain to my uterus. Luckily, we only wanted two kids, so my books have been safe since.

Of course, "creation" takes on different meanings once you have a publisher.

You can always be surprised by multiples.

This has been a great year for me. I sold a second romantic adventure, Behind the Scenes, to Carina Press, and then a paranormal romance series, starting with Under the Moon, to Entangled Publishing. My publishers are like obstetricians. When everything settled, I ended up with back-to-back release dates, just like being told my expected due date had changed, and oh, hey, you're having twins!

So Behind the Scenes will be out October 31st, and Under the Moon on November 1st.

They may both be your babies, but they have their own paths.

I originally wrote Behind the Scenes targeting Silhouette Bombshell (RIP). It needed a complete rewrite after Bombshell failed, because it didn't have the hero's point of view and was way too short for a single title novel. This was the kid who needed constant attention and intervention, meetings with authorities (agents and critiquers), and lots of work to make it live up to its potential.

Under the Moon, however, was a golden child. At first. The original writing flowed like crazy. It received lots of positive input throughout its submission journey, with only too much balance between romance and urban fantasy holding it back. Ultimately, it kept the publisher at Entangled up until 3:00 a.m. reading it, resulting in an offer for the Goddesses Rising series. We had to work hard after that, wrestling the characters onto the romantic side of the fence, but we got it there.

You get to watch them go out into the world.

After all the work—the creation, the nurturing, the angst and frustration and joy and love—you dress 'em up pretty and send them out to seek their own success.

A Note from the Book Boost: If books are like babies I should be retiring by now. I have 17 novels and novellas out there in the world and some were definitely much more difficult labor than others. Thanks for sharing your story with us, Natalie. I wish you the best of luck with both your creations. Please tell us more about your upcoming releases.


Kennedy Smyth's firm provides security for companies and charities in seriously dangerous countries. She doesn't usually take on "frivolous" jobs, but when an old friend asks her to protect his son's movie shoot, she finds it hard to refuse. Also hard to resist is the film's charismatic star, Rogan St. James. The handsome actor piques her interest, while the strange actions of the terrorist threatening the set raise her suspicions.

Even though he's a successful actor, Rogan wants more—a real woman to love, the type he doesn't think exists…until he meets Kennedy. She intrigues him with her confidence and passion for her work, and frustrates him with her refusal to let him get close.

But Kennedy finds herself in a vulnerable position when she discovers that the terrorist isn't actually out to derail the film. She's the real target—and if he finds out how much Rogan means to her, he could be next…


Rogan watched the group striding toward them and weathered a surge of adrenaline. The guy and two women wore nearly identical expressions of determination, and though he’d watched them come in and knew they were with the new security team, they didn’t inspire warm fuzzies. More like fight or flight. The bodyguard who’d been assigned to him for weeks stiffened and stepped forward, putting himself in front of Rogan. He checked his instinctive move to the side to see better. Being protected wasn’t coming easy to him, but he was learning.

The tall brunette in jeans and a leather jacket seemed to be in charge. She held out a hand to

Rogan’s bodyguard.

“Kennedy Smyth, SmythShield. This is my team.” She gestured to the group that had fanned out around her. “Anything we need to know?” she asked the bodyguard, who shook his head.

“It’s all in the briefing report.”

“Okay, then. We’ll take it from here. Thanks.”

She patted the man on his upper arm, closing in on Rogan and dismissing her predecessor. Whether it was the patronization, the touching or the dismissal, Rogan wasn’t sure, but the man’s face darkened an instant before he grabbed Kennedy’s arm, swinging her around. Her guy—about half the size of the one he was replacing—crushed Rogan back against the wall, shielding him. Somehow, in that second, his old bodyguard wound up on the floor, Kennedy’s foot on his neck and his arm twisted between her hands. The other female SmythShield operative shielded

Bailey, while Bailey’s former bodyguard laughed.

“Nice work,” the guy on the ground said, grudgingly. Kennedy let go and helped him up, and the guy on Rogan eased off so he could at least breathe.

“Just testing,” his former guard said in a clearly insincere apology.

“SmythShield doesn’t need to be tested.”

**The cover and excerpt of Under the Moon aren't quite ready yet, but here's the blurb.**

Their power gives them strength…and makes them targets.

Quinn Caldwell is the epitome of a modern goddess. Her power source is the moon, her abilities restricted only by physical resources and lunar phase. She runs a consulting business and her father’s bar, serves on the board of the ancient Society for Goddess Education and Defense, and yearns for Nick Jarrett, professional goddess protector and the soul mate she can never have.

But someone has developed the rare and difficult ability to drain a goddess of her powers, and Quinn is a target. With the world thinking Nick has gone rogue (whatever that means) and that Quinn is influenced by “family ties” she didn’t know she had, keeping themselves safe while working to find the enemy proves harder each day.

But not as hard as denying their hearts…

Want More Natalie?

Visit her website here:

Follow her on Twitter here:!/NJDamschroder

Contest Time:

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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

For the Love of Art with Guest Blogger: Jess Macallan

Win a copy of Stone Cold Seduction and meet paranormal author Jess Macallan today at the Book Boost!

She's here to discuss the art of many covers and here's what she had to say...

Thanks so much for having me at Book Boost today! I want to talk about a subject near and dear to my heart: books. Or more specifically, book shopping, which is the only kind of shopping I enjoy. I recently spoke to a friend about book shopping, and what draws our interest. She contended covers are the most important feature. The right cover art can captivate or repel you in an instant. I disagreed. I’m a loyal reader. I have my favorite authors and I purchase their books as soon as they release, or close to it. I could care less about their cover art. The storyline is what interests me. I scoffed at the idea of buying a book based solely on its cover.

I’m not so shallow that I’d only buy (or not buy) a book because of its cover.

Er…actually, I am. (This is a good place to mention I’m famous for proving myself wrong.) I put myself to the test and I failed. Miserably. I went to my local bookstore and wandered through the aisles, stopping to pick up random books in the romance, YA and urban fantasy sections. I looked at the cover AND the back copy. What I discovered humbled me. I’m a shameless cover junkie.

There, I admitted it. Even if the back copy fails to entice me, the cover can. I don’t have a favorite style, but eye-catching colors or a dramatic picture gets me each and every time. Here are a few of my favorite:

River Marked by Patricia Briggs. Dan Dos Santos is the cover artist for most of her books and he is uber talented. It’s easy to appreciate artistry like this. I have to admit, she’s a favorite author of mine, but her covers rock.

Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning. This cover is gorgeous. And so different from the typical urban fantasy covers on shelves. I love the opulence and rich colors. Again, she’s one of my fave authors, but this cover is hands-down my favorite out of all her books.

Shiver, Linger, and Forever by Maggie Stiefvater. I’ve never read this series, but I added it to my to be read (TBR) pile based on the covers. I love the simplicity. Or rather, the initial simplicity. The more I stare at the covers, the more I love the way the graduating colors give them depth.

And I’d be remiss if I didn’t add my cover to the list. I love the contrast of colors, but I really love the gargoyle *cough* wings. His wings. Ahem. (Superficial cover junkie here, remember?)

As you can see, my cover art tastes vary wildly, but they all have one thing in common: I’d buy these books based on the covers alone. In this instance, I think it’s okay to be superficial. Cover artists are a brilliant, talented group of people. They put a face on books. Authors bring the book to life with their words.

What’s your favorite cover, or favorite cover style?

A Note from the Book Boost: One of the most breathtaking covers I've seen in a long time is Nightshade by Andrea Cremer. Thanks for joining us today, Jess. Congrats on the new release, please tell us more!


When a regular night of Robin Hood-ery results in the manifestation of some, um, unusual paranormal abilities, perfume-maker Elleodora Fredricks realizes the normal world she lives in isn’t quite… normal. And neither is she, thanks to her father, king of the shadow elves. Not only is he evil incarnate and the reason Elle moonlights as a burglar—someone has to take care of all his victims—he’s stolen her memories.

And only reading her fate can fix that.

Good thing she’s got a trio of hotties willing to help her find said fate. Saving her oracle BFF’s fiancée, falling in love with the gargoyle, and making up for breaking the phoenix’s heart ought to be a piece of cake for the princess of the shadow elves.

If only the king didn’t want his daughter dead…


Get in, get out. Get in, get out, I chanted in my head.

I could do this. I crept toward the stairs, keeping to the shadows and the outer edges of the room. Footsteps moving at a fast pace were coming toward me. I touched the small mark for the cloaking ward and silently chanted the words, and pressed against the wall. Please let this work. A split second later, two gargoyles rounded the corner. My mouth went dry, and I was afraid they’d hear my heart pounding, it was so loud.

They were full gargoyles. Their stone feet made dull, heavy thuds against the stone floor.

Hysteria bubbled, and I wondered what happened if they got a chip in gargoyle form. Did they ever break a toe or finger off? Wings tucked behind them, horns on their heads, they were an awesome sight. Long faces, pointy chins and bright, glowing silver eyes. No clothes and very, very…naked.

I brought my gaze back to their faces as they neared the stairs. I held my breath. Silently, they brushed past me, oblivious to my presence. So close, I could have reached out and grabbed their…er…wings. I waited until I could no longer hear their footsteps, before releasing the ward and my breath in a quiet exhale.

I sucked in a deep, shaky breath. That had been far too close for comfort. I made my way down the stairs, one cautious step at a time.

Candle sconces lined the walls. Tiny flames flickered and cast sinister shadows down the curving stairwell. I felt like I was walking down to the dungeons, which is what I’m sure the lower levels used to be. Fear snaked along my spine. I didn’t want to be here.

Which was more motivation to hurry the hell up.

Because of the candle sconces, I couldn’t hug the walls. I crouched down and took the steps as quickly and quietly as I could. Every five steps, I paused to listen. The gargoyles must be faster than I gave them credit for, because I didn’t hear their footsteps receding.

The growing silence strained my nerves. Where were all the guards and oracles MacLean had spoke about? I’d heard one female and seen the two gargoyles. There were five upper levels and three lower levels. I should hear something.

Keeping one hand on the wall, trying to avoid the hot, dripping wax, I made my way downstairs, into what felt like the pit of hell. Was it getting warmer?

The spiral stairs continued down. I was almost there, when the next ward hit me. If I’d thought the first one was big, this one brought me to my knees. Literally.

I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t see. I couldn’t hear. Raw energy consumed me. It ripped through me with the force of a tsunami. As quickly as it started, it was over. Huddled on the stairs, I gasped for breath. A twinge in my shoulder indicated where the new mark was.

“The ward is down. Did you hear that?” The low, nasty voice came from below. It echoed in the stairwell. Heavy thuds on the stairs had me scrambling to my feet.

Shit. They were coming.

Quiet, calm shadow. Quiet, calm shadow, I repeated mentally, squeezing my eyes shut. I held the image in my head, praying it would hold. If I got out of this alive, I’d donate more.

Volunteer my time. Be nice to every person I met. No more take-out food. I’d exercise and get enough sleep. I’d…

The two gargoyles raced up the stairs. Fast and agile, they ran right through me. Right through me.

Shock held me still.

Time was running out. I moved down the stairs, despite the way my legs threatened to give out with each step. Hitting the second level, I ducked into the first room I found. Hoping there was electricity down here, I fumbled for a light switch. Success. I flipped the switch.

With horror, I took in the scene in front of me.

Want More Jess?

Visit her blog here:

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Pick up your copy of her book today! Click here.

Contest Time:

Leave a question or comment for Jess and be entered to win a copy of Stone Cold Seduction.

**Winners for Book Boost prizes are drawn the first week of the following month and posted in the Recent Winners box in the right hand side of the blog. Check back to see if you are a winner and to claim your prize! Please leave your contact information in your blog post!**

Monday, September 5, 2011

As Luck Would Have It with Guest Blogger: Cate Lord

Welcome Entangled author Cate Lord to the blog today.

She's here to chat about her new romantic comedy and here's what she had to say...

Thanks so much to The Book Boost for having me as a guest today! I’m happy to be here and can’t wait to tell you all about my new release, my fun, quirky contemporary romantic comedy Lucky Girl that will be released September 6th by Entangled Publishing.

I’m often asked where I get my ideas for my books. Honestly, inspiration is everywhere: TV shows, snippets of conversation overheard at lunch in a crowded restaurant, fashion magazine articles, even the evening news. If my muse reads or hears something particularly intriguing, she will whisper in my ear, “What if?” That’s a question writers often ask themselves. It usually unravels a flurry of creative brainstorming. At least, it does for me.

Some time ago, my muse, who was becoming bored of writing dark, angst-driven medieval romances (I’ve published six mass market paperbacks written as Catherine Kean), told me she wanted to try a new genre. Her voice sugary sweet with persuasion, she reminded me that I’d studied for a year in England. I’d endured heartbreak right before I’d flown to live with my uncle and aunt in Hertfordshire, and thus found myself a single at the start of my adventure abroad. Every weekday, I’d journeyed by train down to London to take courses. I’d traveled the streets of the huge and ancient city, made friends with handsome Brits and even dated a few. On weekends, I’d partied with a wonderful group of friends I’d met through my English cousins. I’d even met my Mr. Right, a tall, dark, charming Brit with a yummy accent, during this year (We’ve been married more than nineteen years). Surely, with so many elements of this amazing time still resonating with me, there was a story to be told?

There was.

As soon as I started thinking about ways to turn my year overseas into a book, my American heroine, Jessica Devlin, took form. Jess isn’t me. I haven’t been twenty-nine for a few birthdays now, my parents didn’t bitterly divorce when I was twelve, and I’ve never worked as the beauty editor of an Orlando-based magazine. However, elements of Jess’s character and a few of her experiences are drawn from me.

The basic premise of the book is that Jess takes a long overdue vacation to be maid-of-honor in her English cousin’s wedding. Jess is nervous about the trip, however, after recently being dumped by her fiancé while planning her own wedding, and an embarrassing episode two years ago after her beloved grandfather’s funeral. That particular evening involved an English pub, too many drinks, and a handsome Brit who held her in his arms and soothed her while she cried.

Of course, Jess believes there’s a one in a gazillion chance of her running into James Bond gorgeous Nick Mondinello again—but guess who is at the wedding? Jess firmly believes marketing exec Nick isn’t right for her, since he’s a playboy like her dad who left when she was twelve. Fate, though, keeps throwing her and Nick together in ways she never expected.

Grounding Jess’s experiences with a few of my own made her more real to me. She became a best friend through the writing of Lucky Girl, someone I grew to care about a lot. Not only does she face issues common to most young women of today—weight, workplace politics, dating, fashion disasters, family conflicts, and financial woes—but at the end of it all, she’s finally proud of who she is. And, she finds true love. How I love happily-ever-after endings.

I adore the way Lucky Girl turned out. I’m very glad my muse encouraged me to write about Jess, and I hope readers will enjoy her story, too.

A Note from the Book Boost: What a great story and how inspiring that you and your hubby prove that romance can live on (love those accents, too)! Thanks for joining us today, please tell us more about your book.


Jessica Devlin isn’t looking for love. Heartbroken after being dumped by her unfaithful ex-fiancé, she’s determined to have a fabulous time during her vacation in England where she’ll be maid-of-honor at her cousin’s wedding. After working overtime as beauty editor of Orlando’s O Tart magazine, avoiding dating, and putting on ten pounds, Jess is ready to toss her past like an empty lipstick tube and party like a single gal.

But when she steps into the church on her cousin’s wedding day, she sees the one man who could sabotage her plan—James-Bond-gorgeous Nick Mondinello. She’s never forgotten the London marketing exec who held her in his arms after her beloved grandfather’s funeral two years ago. Ambitious, and lusted after by women everywhere, Nick is completely wrong for guarded, Plain Jane Jess.

Could Spy Man Nick ever fall for her? Nope. Not unless Jess is one lucky girl.


I started down the sweeping gravel drive. Already, my stress was fading like the last splashes of sunshine. Now, my head swirled from too much alcohol, sugary cake, and. . . Nick.


I smiled into the breeze tugging at my gown. How totally dumb to get giddy over a few conversations, and him touching my arm—but those moments were mine. All mine.

No one could steal, distort, or shatter them.

Most of all Sex Crazed.

I’d savor those memories for days, like a mint I’d pull out time and again and twirl around on my tongue to revive the zingy flavor, but would never dream of crunching.

While I walked, stones skittered under my sandals. The trees whispered in the breeze. Were those big ol’ cranky oaks talking about me?

Boy oh boy, I must be really drunkie-wunkie. I knew trees didn’t talk or get cranky. Honestly I did.

My toe hit a half-buried stone. Ow! I stumbled, struggled to regain my footing, and stepped hard on the hem of my dress. The seams under my breasts and arms pulled taut, followed by a faint ripping noise.

“Crap.” Righting myself, I squinted down at my gown. I couldn’t see past my humongo-bingo-bongo breasts. Was the silk torn? Were my womanly attributes going to burst out?

As discreetly as possible, I slid my hand up to feel along my underarm and bodice seams. Yes! I was still intact.

Bending down at an awkward angle, I brushed a gray smudge off the silk. It took several swipes to get rid of the smudge, but I managed.

On the last smack, I heard laughter. Swaying slightly, I straightened, blinked, then focused on the cars parked in rows on the lawn.

Tilly and Andrew’s white limo gleamed nearby.

Two ushers stood beside it, their backs to me. Both held metal cans.

Hmm. What were they doing?

I walked closer and heard a soft whhoooshht.

“Don’t forget to slather the door handles,” Nick said, his voice coming from the other side of the car.

“Nick, are you sure we have enough shaving cream?”

“Shaving cream?” I blurted.

Nick straightened and stared at me over the roof of the limo for two long heartbeats. My pulse jumped from a smug-chicky thud-thud to a crazy bam-bam.

“Jess, Jess, Jess.” His tone held a warning note.

Resisting a delicious shiver, I sidled closer. “Nick, Nick, Nick.”

“What are you doing out here? I thought you’d be enjoying another G & T.”

So, he’d been keeping tabs on me, huh? Watching how this Chicky Dee held her drink as part of his panty-interrogation plan? “I thought I’d go for a twilight stroll. Keep out of trouble—unlike you bad boys with your shaving cream.”

“One of Andrew’s friends owns the limo rental company. He won’t mind.” Nick’s gaze slid to the other ushers then back to me. “You’re not going to tell on us, are you?”

“And if I am?” I echoed his teasing tone.

“Tsk-tsk. Wrong answer, Jess.” He stepped from behind the limo, a can of shaving cream
in his hand. “I’ll have to find a way to keep you quiet.”

How exciting. Would he lather me all over with shaving cream? Force me to join them? This could be very, very fun. “Keep me quiet?” I said. “How?”

He fingered the can’s trigger. White foam hissed out into his palm before he arched an eyebrow.

“That doesn’t scare me.”

His brow arched higher. More foam spurted out until it filled his hand. Enough to toss like a mucky snowball.

“Want this in your hair?” he said, his voice husky and low.

Barely resisting a shudder, I shrugged. “It will comb out.”

He grinned. “On your face?”

“It’ll wash off.”

Eyes narrowing, he moved closer. His gaze slipped to the neckline of my gown then locked on my breasts. “On your. . . dress?”

Chills skittered over my skin. Hoo-eeee!

Watching him, I slowly circled around the tail end of the limo. They’d splattered shaving cream on the boot. Someone had scribbled ‘Just Married’ in clumsy letters.

I giggled. “Wow. You guys would get an A in kindergarten printing.”

Nick scooted closer. “You’re not going to tell, right?”

Wicked excitement burned inside me. I felt alive, exhilarated, and very, very naughty. “Why the hell not?”


A vision of the boy chasing the girl in the reception hall darted though my mind. “C’mon, Nick.

You’ve no reason to get your panties in a knot, right?”

Laughing, he shook his head. “Promise you won’t tell.”

“No, I can’t promise.”

“Well, then. . .” He lunged toward me.

I shrieked, spun around, and bolted across the lawn.

Want More Cate?

Visit her website here:

Pick up a copy of her book Sept. 6th! Click here.